Finish a Marathon in Your 90s? You Bet

in Active Aging

Written by Christine Thompson

The prospect of running a marathon is no light endeavour — even for the young. As a senior, it’s hard to even fathom the effort and training one would have to undergo.

That is unless, you’re someone like 92 year old US resident Harriette Thompson. That’s because she finished another marathon this June with an unofficial time of 7:24:36, becoming the world’s oldest person ever to complete a marathon.

90-Year-Old Marathon Runner Hariette

Photo Credit: usatoday.com – Paul Nestor/Competitor Group

Now you may be inclined to think she’s been running her whole life. Or she’s a natural.

Not so.

She took up running at age 76 after cancer started afflicting her family. As a result, Harriette has raised over $100,000 towards the disease to date.

So is Harriette special? Nope. Just considerably motivated. Could that be you? Yes. It could.

At PARC Retirement Living, some residents, who are on average in their mid 80s, are getting more active by the week. Enrollment in PARC FIT programs and wellness services are seeing an upward trend on the graph.

Some residents attend the gym 4 or 5 times a week, lifting weights, stretching or joining classes and getting outside for brisk pole walking. Many are seeing vast improvements as a result:  a drop in blood pressure as well as greater strength and abilities. Especially improved mobility.

Okay, this may not lead to a world record. But does it really matter? The greatest payoff is what it does for you and your life, your health and longevity.

And I’m pretty sure when Harriette stepped out for her first run, she couldn’t imagine running marathons at 92 and setting records.

But hey, anything’s possible. Right?